Long Term Customer Satisfaction in a Data Center who are you focused on?

Here is a question.  Who are you focused on if you want to achieve long term customer satisfaction of a Data Center build or lease?

Most would focus on the decision makers of the initial project.  But, too many times the people who start the project are not the ones who live with the decision made.  And worse case the team making the initial data center choices are optimizing for their budget and internal visibility vs. the long term cost, operations, and availability of the data center.  Any problems in operations can easily be diverted by saying that the operations team is at fault, and the design was perfect.

I always watch out for those who make it seem like their designs are perfect and don't have issues.  Any good design has trade-offs.  And, some of those trade-offs may not be the ones you may make.  A high availability data center will have higher costs to build and operate.  An energy efficient design may have higher inlet temperatures which makes it hard for legacy systems to be accommodated.  There is no perfect car.  Especially for everyone.  There are no perfect data centers.  People are most proud of their acquisition within the first months and they talk about how it is the best data center as if they are Donald Trump showing his latest building.  After a year the novelty wears off.  

Except…  There are a set of people that will show off their data center years after it was commissioned.

Who?  The operations team who take pride in their work.  Those who had an active role during construction and have a loud voice in operations are way more likely to be proud of their data centers.  These are the people who will tell their peers about the vendors used, procedures, best practices, and the issues they have run into.  

If people spend more time focusing on the data center operations team then there is a good chance you'll increase customer satisfaction.

In the data center industry the big are getting bigger.  The small are folding their operations into the cloud.  The middle is silent as they get squeezed in markets, margin, and find it hard to compete. In this shift, the role of data center operations will grow.